Failure of fuel supply on tug Luvly Jubbly resulting in grounding of its tow, dumb barge Lond Sands

Location: Weymouth Bay, England.

Completed PE Summary: Luvly Jubbly

A short summary of the accident and action taken:

Vessel name:   Luvly Jubbly (ex Oliver Felix)  
Registered Owner:   David Welsh  
Port of Registry:   N/A  
Flag:   N/A  
Classification Society:   N/A  
Type:   Tug  
Built:   1962 on board
Construction:   Steel  
Length overall:   28.66m  
Gross tonnage:   144/160  
Date & Time:   1349 Local time 23 October to 0100 24 October 2007  
Location of incident:   West of Isle of Portland / Weymouth Bay  
Incident Type:   Mechanical failure followed by grounding of the barge  
Persons onboard:   5  
Injuries/fatalities:   Nil  
Damage/pollution:   Nil  
Category:   Merchant
Vessel name:   Dumb Barge - Long Sands
Type:   Dumb barge with 2 spud legs
Built:   1962
Construction:   Steel
Length overall:   32.69m
Gross tonnage:   189.64
Date & Time:   1349 Local time 23 October to 0100 24 October 2007
Damage/pollution:   Minimal leak of fuel from barge and deck crane


The tug Luvly Jubbly towing the barge Long Sands, on passage from Cowes to Plymouth, sought shelter from the increasing winds and sea in West Bay. The tug lost power when the fuel supply failed, west of Portland Isle, and they drifted south with the tide. Luvly Jubbly, having regained limited power, was escorted by the RNLI lifeboat into Weymouth Bay where the tug, rafted to the barge, anchored to complete engine repairs and wait for a suitable tidal flow to round Portland Isle. The wind was forecast to back north-easterly and then decrease overnight. During the evening, the wind unexpectedly veered to the south-east and increased, exposing the tug and tow to a lee shore.

As the conditions deteriorated, the mooring lines between the tug and barge started to break and the anchor dragged. The tug skipper transferred to the barge to attempt to re-secure the lines as the barge grounded close to shore. The skipper was returned to Luvly Jubbly by the lifeboat, and attempts to recover the barge were postponed. Overnight, the barge listed and the portable crane fell from the deck, remaining attached to both Long Sands and the seabed, holding the barge in position.

Action taken

The Chief Inspector of Marine Accidents has written to the MCA Chief Executive encouraging him to make every effort to introduce the SCV Code as quickly as possible, and to review the manning requirements for Coded vessels on longer and more complex voyages.

The Chief Inspector has also written to the owner of Luvly Jubbly strongly advising that an additional trained person is employed during towing operations and extended voyages, and to seek to have the tug either Classified or Coded under the SCV Code at the soonest opportunity.

Published: January 2008

Published 23 January 2015